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Oberon

Pet Fanfic Hates

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I didn't know where to put this so please move it somewhere else if there's a better place.

Since here appears to be DEAD, yet there are people writing, tell me what your pet fanfic hates are. The things that make you absolutely click away from a fic and never read it again.

I have a long list of them but I'll post them later for discussion if no one wants to join in.

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That's a good question you brought up there.

I don't really have that many but there are a few.

1 - Bad grammar. I can stand it to a point, hell, I'm known for doing it once every chapter some where when I write. But if the writer does nothing but fill his/her chapter with grammar that makes the story too difficult to read, or just plane unreadable, then I just don't bother.

2 - Breaking the Universe Law. If you write a story that resides within the universe of a well known comic, manga, anime, tv series, movie, etc...then it's best to abide by those laws of that particular series. You shouldn't just go and do what you feel like and disregard the laws entirely. This ruins a story. A way you can bypass the laws though is if you place your story in an AU or AR, Alternate Universe/Alternate Reality of the borrowed series. this way, the laws can be slightly re-written but still followed. As long as you can explain this within the story then I don't care but I can't stand the ones that disregard the set laws of a series in their entirety.

3 - Total Gender Domination. I'm not a real big fan of this type of thing what so ever. If you write a story where the main character is a total dick and a tyrant who has a harem of unwilling women at his beck-n-call and all he does is abuse them then I won't read it. Now, if it's a story where there is an enemy that your character is taking down and you write scenes based on the enemy for only those few chapters alone then I won't mind as much. But to write a story completely based around a character that treats the opposite sex in such a way is a complete turn off for me when it comes to wanting to read a fan-fiction.

That's about it for me at the moment.

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Since you asked...I agree with Toku's point on Grammar - I can't stand bad grammar, especially where someone has made an obvious lack of attempt at cleaning it up, or their only excuse is "English is not my first language," I know that's harsh of me, but if you're really that bothered by it then get a beta (FF.net has a place to look for one) or get a friend with better English than yours to go over it. I would perhaps be more inclined to read it if someone who's English was bad put a note up to that effect, but also showed signs that they were taking the writing seriously - asking for advice, or clearly using the writing as an exercise to develop their use of the language. Also, I agree with the point on sticking to the rules of the universe the fic is set in...however, my opinion on using AU/AR as a loop-hole is up in the air, but I avoid these anyway...'What-If's' I don't mind so much. I feel that it shows a good measure of skill and understanding if someone can write a decent fic, while sticking to the rules and characters they're working with. It says something when you write a piece and the readers get the feeling that it could happen.

Lack of Consistency - This is where someone can't decide from which POV they're writing from. I came across one where the author largely wrote from a third-person POV, but when it came to certain scenes the POV and pace changed completely - at some points, the fourth wall was even broken, e.g. "blah blah, and oh my gosh! His grip was so powerful, it sent tingles through her skin (like mine, wow!)...blah blah etc." It was a Hwang/Seung Mi-Na fic and the premise was mundane, but I was bored and needed a fix for my obsession with this pair...but coming across that type of writing put me off.

Japanese - Largely a personal preference, but I dislike it to an extreme extent that the first usage (even if it's -san) puts me off and I'm in search of something else. My Japanese isn't bad - I've been learning for some years now, but hardly fluent - but I don't like seeing random Japanese thrown in fanfiction, just to show that the author knows how to use honorifics or random phrases or words. It's kind of rude as well, since not everyone know's Japanese and it gives me the impression that the author is an obnoxious otaku, considering that more often than not a translation is not provided and there is no real reason for the characters to start speaking Japanese, especially if they're spending the rest of the fic speaking in English. Also, from my stance as a writer, I'm an English person writing for an English audience - I'm writing in English, so if I wanted Japanese I'd have written the whole thing in it (if I could). I guess this could also be applied to fics that use other languages as well, but I mainly read Anime/Manga-based stuff so this is where my gripe stems from.

OOC-ness - hate; Hate; HATE! Goes with sticking to the rules of the Universe, but what's the point in writing a fic where the characters are completely OOC? I'm a fan of Fruits Basket and am quite fond of the Tohru/Shigure pairing, but the number of fics out there that are badly written by bending the characters the way the author wants them to be, i.e. Tohru the saucy minx and Shigure the dirty, older man who likes to call her "My Flower..." *shudders* I've undertaken the task of writing my own, just to see how well I can pull it off...so far, it's quite heavy :/

Mary Sue/Marty Stu (OC's) - Writing a good OC is challenging, considering it's too easy to make them cardboard cut-outs that fall into the Mary Sue/Marty Stu category. I'll probably read it, but if it's not done well enough, I'll probably get bored of it real fast and maybe the first sign that a character goes OOC around the author's OC, I will look for something else...it's why I rarely write OC's, I can't be bothered with the hassle and it's more fun for me to explore the existing characters further. That said, I have like 4 fics in the works with OC's. One of them has been axed for various reasons - the OC being one of them - and the other three are okay, but I'm polishing them up as I go...well, one's a baby, so what's it going to do? Actually, it has made the father go OOC, but I have a 'legit' reason for it and it's temporary...

Overpowered OC's - I've come across too many of these, especially during my DBZ-obsessed days. It's not fair, though it could be possible. In my mind, the creator of a series, while not outright saying it, implies that the main character is the powerful one, because he'll always find a way to triumph. However, because it's not outright stated as fact, it does leave the possibility open that there could be a more powerful character out there, either evil or good, but rather than writing about them, the creator writes about this particular character...though somehow, they still manage to save the world and never encounter this possible stronger character. It's a tricky thing, since Overpowered OC's work for some, but they don't really work for me...even though, I have been guilty of this, but the fic that dealt with it will never see the light of day (again). If I were to revisit it, I'll probably put it under heavy re-evaluation and change a lot of things about it.

I suppose the above makes me sound "elitist" and I should perhaps lighten up, since fanfiction is largely written for fun...but I think that a lot of people are just taking the *proverbial* nowadays. It's like "Ooh! Other people are doing it, so I'll do it too!" and proceed to sit in front of the computer, tapping out some half-assed, poorly thought out fic and call it a day. If it's their first fic, they always seem to write a spiel at the top along the lines of...

"Hi, this is my first fic, so be kind okay? I've never written anything before, but harsh comments will make me sad and if you want to see me write some more, so please be nice...I'm sorry if the grammar's really bad, but I just HAD to get this out and like I said, it's my first time writing something so I'm not too good at it...Anyway, thanks for reading! Cookies all around!"

That doesn't give you an automatic free-pass. Granted, over the years, I may have been guilty of similar things, but I was a saddo back then and given the chance, I would beat the crap out of myself. But then, had I not made those mistakes, I wouldn't be who I am now...I think the only one ones of my peeves I've been guilty of, are badly written OC's and handing out cyber-cookies...perhaps even highlighting my lack of knowledge on a series. Yeah, I did that once, but only to ask if my understanding of the characters were good since I didn't want them to go OOC - if they were, I'd have probably axed it or done further research to hit the right mark.

Edited by ErutanXiku

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Makes me wonder if you think of me and BK with our QG-Rebirth! fanfic project when you talk about the Overpowered OC and the Japanese language thing, lol.

But, it's your concern with the Japanese part that is now making me consider putting a Japanese vocabulary at the beginning of every chapter of my series that has Japanese characters speaking words in Japanese. this way, the reader will know what to expect in the long run.

Honestly, I don't know that much Japanese at all and i only use words that I do know which is around only 1% of the entire language. Japanese in of itself is a big confusing language to many people who are not native to it and don't even get me started on the kanji, hirogana and katakana [emote=onion]spiral[/emote]

Overpowered OC's, I can see where you're coming from on this and that's partly the reason why I build so many limitations to the overpowering forms of OC's I create. Say either a time limit, high risk to the users body, possible death of using such a great power, may drive the character insane, etc...that type of thing.

With bad fanfics in general, if I find one I just can't get into and it shows that the author is just a plan idiot...or is that bigot in European English...then it makes me do this to either my wall or my desk first, [emote=monkey]head[/emote], followed by me feeling like this, [emote=monkey]daze[/emote]

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I was worried about it coming across that way, and while I did think of your QG fic, I was more worried about it looking like I was taking my opinions to a public forum - which I wasn't. I was just voicing my deep-rooted opinion on my preferences for fanfiction (as was the intention of the topic), and besides...we've covered those aspects already and I guess, I could label myself satisfied...just, it happens to tick two boxes on my "Pet Peeves" list :lol: but as always iterated, it's your fic, don't make any changes to it on my account, I'll be happy to know that my opinion was at least considered.

About the Overpowered OC's, it's just something that doesn't interest me. Sure, I dabbled in it myself - nothing wrong with it, but I consider the act more as part of my "experimental" phase to see what floated my boat as a writer/reader. I noted a conflict of opinion when I listed it, in that the very notion of it breaks the Universe (as it pulls away from the implicit suggestion that the main character, i.e. any Shounen protagonist, is the powerful one), but at the same time the Universe doesn't outright deny, nor support, the possibility...so yeah, it just boils down to me not "getting turned on" - for lack of a better term - by it. The idea doesn't just apply itself to, let's say, a Soul Reaper that's stronger than Ichigo, but can also lend itself to something like Harry Potter (hate the series) where you have a character who has exceptional magical ability, but has had a more traumatic backstory just to rival the hero's and somehow the two end up together and live happily ever after...that would be a combination of Overpowered OC and Mary Sue/Marty Stu - something I'm trying very hard to steer Haruka away from, but in her case it would be Mary Sue, since I never planned for her to be overpowered.

As for the Japanese thing...it's just one of the things I can't get over. It's a shame, because I'll probably come across a very well-written fic and as soon as it get's to dialogue, lo and behold...Japanese is thrown in and I switch off. It's bad of me, but I can't get past it, it just reminds me of how on most Anime/Manga-based forums that are over-run by new fans and every other word they utter is a Japanese one, because they think they look/sound cool or just to show their appreciation of Japan or because it makes them appear more "hardcore" *shudders* I was never like that, but for a time I was a mindless drone that shunned Dubs, until some rational part of my mind took over and I grew up...I think that at the time, since the other two people I knew in real life who were into Anime were like that didn't help. They would continually utter "Bishie; Bishie; Kakkoi; Sugoi; Kawaii..." and single phrases like that, and never in the right context...

But yes, I understand it's your preference at the end of the day and I'm not exactly your target audience (well, maybe a tiny bit, since it's aimed at Guyver fans), just someone who bounces ideas around. Having thought about it further, I don't think that there is an easy way to offer people unfamiliar with Japanese a way of understanding it without breaking the flow of the story. Putting definitions at the top of the page would be handy, but when they do encounter the word, they'd have to scroll back up to find the definition if they don't remember it and will probably lose their place in the process. Having it at the bottom doesn't help either, since reading it won't make any sense and when they get to the bottom, they'll probably want to double-check the context it was used in to have it make sense. Then there's the option of putting the definition where the word appears, but that breaks the flow as well, and in all cases, unless a person is eager to learn, they will probably wonder why it wasn't kept in English in the first place, considering everything else is. I apologise for complicating it.

I know Japanese is a confusing language, but I don't think it's any more confusing than other languages out there - yeah, there are easier one's to learn, like French/Italian/Spanish, but that's because they share a similar Latin root to English...at least that's why I find them easier to learn...but it's like learning English for those not native to it. I'll give you that though, I don't think I see myself learning Kanji/Hiragana/Katakana anytime soon, I don't think even the average Japanese person knows more than 90 or so characters :/

As for bad fanfics with bad authors, I'm sorry to ask (and at the risk of sounding very dim) you do mean authors that disregard anything and everything when writing, right? Sorry, you just confused me with 'Idiot' and 'Bigot'...'Idiot' I get, but isn't a 'Bigot' when someone is prejudiced and intolerant to other views? (kind of like how I come across sometimes :redface: ...I respect other opinions, but sometimes I prefer to agree to disagree, since most of my points are just as valid as others...unless a suitable rebuttal is made)

Edited by ErutanXiku

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I agree with a lot of the ones already suggested so have tried to keep these varied:

Lack of Cannon characters - um please - where are they? Obviously some fics can't fit them all in but at least the fic should try to use the cannon characters somewhat to establish the universe. It's okay if some aren't there, for example an introspection fic probably isn't going to be able to put everyone in there but don't just lose the cannon characters under so many original characters that they can't be found. I don’t mind original characters but they should have a logical reason for existing and shouldn’t automatically be the main characters new best friend.

Next generation or kids - published authors can't get next generation books right, why do fanfic writers think they can? Obviously people are going to produce kids but don't make them the focus of the fic and definitely don't make them super powered wiz's that can do everything their parents did with a 1/10th of the effort and mix all the mistakes of the universe.

Mary/Marty Sue or Self Insertion – Die... just die.

Chapter Length/Drabbles - it should not be easy to write a review longer than the fic/chapter. Fanfic writers should at least give their readers some credit and write something of a length to be worth reading. So about minimum chapter size I like to see is 2-3k words.

Authors who stop - Why the hell start a fic if you aren't going to finish it? Getting bored I can sort of understand but those who write themselves into plot holes are just ... well dumb. Honestly have an idea of not only what you are going to finish on but how you are going to get there so that you don't write yourself into oblivion. It's just impolite. And if you do stop writing, as some have, give the readers at least the outline of what should have happened.

E-cookies - um... yeah, what the hell are these? Are they like an e-penis? I have though seen one good thing with a cookie bribe to read or review and that was where the author gave out either a small section of the next chapter early OR gave out a short fic that they hadn't posted. So you actually GOT something useful and real for reviewing rather than some silly 'cookie' line.

Grammar - if the author is trying to improve I'll be a bit more forgiving but in general there is enough help out there that you can get this fixed.

Bad Spelling - I'm not talking the difference between Honour and Honor but genuinely bad spelling that isn't fixed. The occasional typo is fine, no one can find everything but they should try.

Bad formatting/paragraphing - I know some sites for fanfic posting can be painful to post up your fic but at least try to make it easy to read. Use spaces between paragraphs and indenting if needed. Use longer lines and section breaks. Basically make it easy for someone to read. This isn't a book, there is no space or page limitation so bunching everything up is just bad practice and having one solid block of text is difficult for someone to read and they probably won't.

---

Some Guyver Specific ones

Sho and Sean in the same universe - it doesn't work. They are meant to be the same person so let's go with the original and the best shall we and erase Sean entirely.

Powerful characters who got power easily - Any character more powerful than the most powerful cannon character who 'stumbles' upon their Unit/Zoalord power should die horribly and lingeringly but early in the fic.

Cannon characters not present in the fic or regulated to minor roles - Having bits about other character is fine and necessary but this shouldn't consume the whole fic.

Agito stronger than Sho - not happening. Ever.

Agito being nice - forget it, he is possessive, manipulative and narcissistic. The only reason he's nice to anyone is to use them.

Altered and more powerful Guyver Units - There are an awful lot of them and I know what I blame for this and while it can be done well, it usually isn't. This isn't to say that I don't think people should alter the units in a fic, just that if they are going to do it, it should be logical and possible within the universe.

The concept of 'power up' within the Guyver Universe is established though - through the Gigantic but alterations should be kept reasonable IMO and if you have to add a heap of powers that the Guyver Unit just doesn't have then you probably aren't thinking hard enough how to do stuff with the existing power. An example alteration that makes sense - shields - already seen in the Gigantic unit so possible perhaps normally. Alteration that doesn't make sense - telekinesis - um hello.... why?

Super powered Guyver Units/Beings who appear randomly and have no reason to exist. Okay so you want an all-powerful sage in your fic... don't make them a guyver. Make them something else, like a respected elder or a weird lost number, believed dead but still alive and in hiding. LOL I don't know, there's lots of different things that it could be without making them all powerful.

---

On the Japanese in fics... well I don't mind the occasional word or the honourifics but it really depends a bit on who's saying it or doing it. Like a name for example. Let's take DBZ for example, MOST of their names have a meaning in Japanese to do with food or underwear so I don't mind it if someone makes an original character and calls them the Japanese equivalent food name.. Other things can be annoying though I agree. Kawaii or Kowai or bishie or others... I mean why not say cute, scary or handsome/good-looking?

I can probably handle any of the above being broken if it’s been done WELL. A good logical plot with good writing will gloss over quite a few flaws.

Example, new and original characters can be great if they are tempered with their own flaws and aren’t all consuming of the fic. The same way as altered guyver units can work, if the alteration is reasonable.

Also some of the above can be forgiven or over looked where they are the premise of the fic. But then it still needs to be interesting so that you don’t stop and see the flaw or what could be a flaw.

So I guess, in as much as I can dislike some of the above, I can also forgive, in the case where it is done well... the pity is that there aren’t that many guyver or other fics that do, do it well.

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well, i guess im pretty guilty of the "stopping". i havent updated my fic at ffnet in ages, and although i make excuses like, i dont have the time, or i hit a block or whatever, im still guilty. i still work on it time to time, i find that if i wait a few weeks after i finish a chapter, there is something i spot i can change to make it better, whether its simple ideas, or even to make it better reading.

i do know how im ending it, i even know whats going on in the middle, i just have a hard time putting pictures into words. (i make scenes up like a comic or movie in my head, thats how i write.) so my process is super slow...

i also figured that if i kept any finished chapters to myself and start working on the next one with out updating, i'd be more in a hurry to finish up the story, rather than to post and feel tempted to take a break for all my hard worK! that was a joke.

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Regarding names, I don't care where they come from...it's a name. You're hardly going to write a fic with an OC that doesn't have a name that suits the Universe it's set in :) If, however, they're meant to be of a certain lineage, then there has to be a reason for the name being different. Continuing your example of the DBZ-verse, the OC in my fic will be given a new name by their Saiyan father. Naturally, it would be a Vegetable-related pun, but the father wants his child to symbolise a new start for him because of all the crap he's been through; he'll get suggestions from another character, but I think ultimately he'll give her something completely different...I haven't decided what though, but Selene sounds nice, also it means "Moon" thus retaining the Saiyan link...

I don't mind Next Gen fics, but they have to be done really well. I know author's can't do it right, but some fans out there may have a better appreciation for their work and feel that they can retain the spirit - I feel when author's do it, it suffers because they usually do it as an excuse to cash in and it's pretty obvious that they never gave the idea much thought. I was working on a Flash/Supergirl fic gave the story and characters so much thought (their two children had inherited a balance between their parent's powers, but they were nowhere as strong since they were half Human/half Argosian, but that also meant they had their own immunities/resistances), that it really upsets me that I won't be working on it since the idea was shared and created by my ex-friend - this is a reason why I rarely do Co-Op's; with her, I never walked into the idea lightly, but she was so persistent. I also came up with a Jubilee/Scott fic that focused on them, but also the Next Generation...it was again a masterpiece in the making, well it had a lot of potential since it also spanned the lives of the other X-Men. Again, despite me coming up with the idea, a lot of the planning was made with my ex-friend and so unless I can think of a way of doing it without using her suggestions (which is practically half of the damn thing) I won't be working on it...though if I feel rebellious enough, I might write it anyway...it's too good to not work on just because she wants to be a selfish mare.

However, the point of Next Gen fics is to focus on the Next Generation so they would be the points of interest, but you're right there...it's not like the parents have suddenly disappeared from existence; they too would still be dealing with their drama.

I never got the point of Drabbles...but I don't limit myself to a set chapter length anymore. I average about 1,500-2000 words, and that's based on how I feel when I write - I stop once I feel that a chapter is "complete". I used to impose a 10,000 word limit, but not anymore...incidentally, that was the rule for the fic I've axed. I haven't officially stated it, since some part of me is hoping that I'll take it up again and complete it, but I can't. I know where it's going and how it's supposed to end, but I can't bring myself to work on it, so I'll be putting up a closing page soon - thanks for reinforcing that idea. Though...I may reboot it, but it depends on how I feel - since it's based on FFVII, my motivation has decreased further what with the way SE has been butchering it.

A few titles I'm working on are on hold, but I'm slowly getting back into them - I feel my creativity slowly creeping back, but I'll never cancel a fic unless I outright say so :)

As for grammar, I recently found this site and I love it: Common Errors in English Usage

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Double post sorry.

ErutanXiku, I'm not familiar with your work so can't really comment much on it? Do you have a link?

Edited by Oberon

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Uh yeah...everything I write is on FanFiction.net and I always use the same Username as I do here, but here's the link: http://www.fanfiction.net/~erutanxiku

Sorry, I wasn't expecting that lol, but I haven't been writing steadily for about 5 or so years now, and have been constantly thinking of how to continue my work's with no real sense of inspiration - though I have started fics in that time and added a chapter here and there. As said, I'm only just getting back into them...

Edited by ErutanXiku

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Thanks, I'll have a look in a little while. I'm on a computer that doesn't like FFnet.

I did notice that two of the fics here have been updated yet neither author has seen fit to grace us with their opinion, which is their right but is disappointing when wanting to spark discussion and some liveliness into the community here.

Perhaps I should put another pet hate up then? Authors who don't comment on other work yet want feed back themselves? :D

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I'm sure your not trying to be offencive there Oberon, but it comes across that way.

But sure fair dues, I've not read or commented on anyone's fan fics. I dont perticularly have that much time to spare when I'm not doing something. I will usualy do like for like. If someone takes an intrest and reads my stuff I'll do the same... but some of the threads can seem intimidating. Where to start? are there story archs? do writers have an order too it in their head. Its not something that looks easy to jump into.

Yes I write myself... although no longer any Fan Fiction. I try to keep to meterial i'm creating myslef. Its not exactly very original but I like doing it and I dont like to be constrained by some of the various reasons listed in this very thread. Alot of it applies to all fiction writing but whe its fan fiction then you lose alot of creative control.

There are so many tropes that can easily be disliked and take great skill in pulling off well. I dont clame to be able too myself so I didn't want to list a whole load of things I dont like. Thats why I havn't posted (that and this thread is only two days old and I've been working twelve hour shifts since sunday) its not that I dont feel like gracing you with my opinion as you so nicly put it.

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heh, well, i never said i was perfect oberon.

perhaps i bit off more than i can chew, perhaps im distracted with other projects that are more time sensitive. heck sometimes i open up that file take a look, and get discouraged. in which im not sure by, the story atleast to me is sound, so is the way the characters are interacting with each other. i know how to connect each main point of my outline together and its not hard to make it run smooth into the next plot idea.

personally tho, im a procrastinator.

as for the viewing other peoples stories... i feel bad for this but im a very picky reader. if the summary doesnt catch my eye, then chances are im not gonna read it.. this doesnt count friends stories of course.

i skim thru the stories on ffnet whenever my connection is good, which is nearly never now. sad to say, i only have dial up. (which is also why im waiting to finish the story before posting the next chapter)

there are tons of stories that are updated that i still havent read, namely a few chronotrigger novelizations.

as for leaving reviews for them... even if i loved a story, i find i have a hard time expressing how or why i did, and i'd rather not simply leave a "love your story, hope to see more"

to do that seems.. i dunno. cheap somehow. not commenting on others, i just dont feel like im honoring the author if i'd post a remark like that.

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There are so many tropes that can easily be disliked and take great skill in pulling off well. I dont clame to be able too myself so I didn't want to list a whole load of things I dont like.

I don't think you have to write fanfiction to be able to express an opinion on what you like; you could just read for leisure like with books - provided you have the time. We all have preferences; I mean, I'm hardly a good writer, but I try, and as a reader, I know what floats my boat :)

You make a point though, about how writing fanfiction limits one's creativity...but for me, I don't feel that is so. I find it an interesting challenge/exercise in developing my writing, also it keeps me grounded in a way, so that with my own works, I don't get so outlandish. It also helps to define rules and sensibilities...at least, that's how I've developed, since I couldn't get reliable critique on my own works, so fanfiction was my way of developing as a writer. I would often ask my mum or friends for opinions, but friends and family are the worst critics since they'll feel obligated to like your work, or don't know how to react to it if it's not their thing. It's something that's frustrated me about FF.net though, that a lot of reviews you get are nonsense and don't provide anything in the way of constructive criticism; yeah, it's flattering to know you love my work, but is there anything else? Like how it's written or how I can improve it? I've, thankfully, had a few reviews that steered me in the right direction, and am still bumbling along, trying to polish myself, hehe.

as for the viewing other peoples stories... i feel bad for this but im a very picky reader. if the summary doesnt catch my eye, then chances are im not gonna read it.. this doesnt count friends stories of course.

That's a true statement and probably applies to almost everyone; the summary is the first thing you'll see of a fic, and who wants to read something that's basically babble and begging for people to read? You wouldn't put that on a book to be published - again, I'm placing too much serious emphasis...

It's sometimes one of the hardest things to work out for me, even more that settling for a title(!), since I don't want it to give too much away of the plot, and I don't want it to be too obscure that it has connection with the story at all. Also, it has a word limit...

Two more gripes I forgot to include...

Excessive Coarse Language - Yeah...I've never been a potty-mouth, and I don't like reading something that overuses profanity. I mean, does anyone actually talk that way? My one shame, however, is my Saiyuki fic, Proud of my Loneliness. When I read it now, I'm shocked at the way I wrote and a part of me wants to go back and change everything, but then it wouldn't be a testament to my development as a writer. It's not a bad story; rough around the edges, but just the level of language...Perhaps, that fic had the unfortunate fate of being my outlet, since I was at a certain age and now I've mellowed...shame; shame; shame...

Badly Written Intimacy - I don't actively hunt these out, since I'm a prude, but sometimes it's not something you can avoid. Especially, when dealing with a mature storyline - even in published works. Plus, there's always going to be that fantasy pairing...however, since I'm reading to enjoy a story for the drama, what puts me off is how badly these situations are written and handled. Often, characters will go OOC, but more often, I don't like seeing certain words used to refer to certain anatomical parts; it kind of lowers the standard in a way and is pretty insulting, considering I have a high level of respect for the Human Body in general (to a point where it could be considered creepy, I mean...it's an amazing piece of work). God, I'm making it sound like I paid for an S-Class show, and got some Cheap Sleazy Porno instead...but it feels that way. I mean, if the story itself is classy, then why degrade it with poorly written intimacy? Some of them are so bad, I gag. Also, it begs the question of whether the intimacy is an essential part of the story, and whether it was thrown in to spice things up or just because that was the focus of the author...

For me, writing is an art, and I put a lot of pressure on myself to use the English Language to such a degree, that I can almost paint a picture with words. There's nothing more satisfying for me, than using words in an artful manner, because if used correctly it could be beautiful...almost poetic - yes, I also dabbled in poetry... There are various ways to accomplish this, one could be to write detail to a Tolkien-level of accuracy (which I dabbled in and ended up not liking), but I'm hoping to steer my way into writing with less description, but with just as much impact. Of course, I don't hold other writers to my standard, but it doesn't stop me from having preferences.

An example of a recent published work I hated is The Birthing House. I have no idea how it was given the green light to be published, and got rid of it as soon as I could - sadly, I dropped it off at my local charity shop, having too much respect to have it donated to the local library...

Edited by ErutanXiku

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I don't think you have to write fanfiction to be able to express an opinion on what you like; you could just read for leisure like with books - provided you have the time. We all have preferences; I mean, I'm hardly a good writer, but I try, and as a reader, I know what floats my boat :)

I used to read fan fiction when I was in china and didn't really have much reading material or access to comics. Some were great and inspiering, some not so much.

Its not that I dont have an opinion on what I dislike. Its just that I personaly dont like critisizing things that I feel I cant do better myself. It takes something quite strong to evoke a responce that I'm willing to share. I'm a fairly useless critic.

Instead of being a negetive thing I feel we should try slanting this thread towards helping the writers here rather than listing a whole bunch of things we hate. I just dont really see the point and many of the things I dislike are already mentioned.

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LOL Lahz, I was being facetious with the comment about the time. I can understand what you mean about not wanting to be 'cheap' with a comment or review but isn't posting something better than just silence? At least that way the author knows that there is some appreciation of their work rather than not knowing. I guess that will come down to each author though and if you are writing for yourself, in which case you probably don't need to write everything down as you already know the story you want to tell or if you are writing because you want to get your idea out there to generate enjoyment from/for others.

You can take it how you want Steel, it's still the truth but you've assumed that a 'Things you like' thread won't be started in due course. The sentiment to make this thread more to help the people posting here is a noble one, but I can see the threads, and the replies, just as well as you can and I can see that on the whole there isn't a lot of comment or critic or praise that is worth much. While if you liked a fic I think that you should write that you liked it, you are correct, it is difficult to then to sometimes write a critique that is balanced and useful to the author. But by that statement Steel, not every thread here has even much in the way of praise and recently it's tapered off and just because you don't think you can do better, in my opinion isn't something that should hold you back on having an opinion.

It's exactly like Art. I can't paint but some of the classic works of art that are considered absolute master pieces by society I don't like and I'm prepared to say that. This is no different, just on a far less grand scale. And okay sure, criticizing the work will bring your own under scrutiny, but won't that, in the end, make yours better too?

Edited by Oberon

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I get what your saying. My point was that critisizing isn't in my character. It never has been and there are a multitude of reasons for it. I'm capable of it yes, but I'll nearly always hide the negitive side.

As I said, I'm a busy man there for I dont read fanfiction because it will always be perceved as a risk. Yes even published writen work can be an utter waist of time but finding those hidden gems is alot harder when you dont know what your getting.

I am up for helping this place mind you. My sugestion is that we start a Sign up thread for critiquing. You sign up and add a link to one peice of fiction and the others review it and try and help you along. Then you do the same for whatever they have signed up. Quid pro quo. One bit at a time, that way we keep it fair and people get a taste for someone elses work. If you then want to go further and read the rest of their stuff then great. But we try to keep the sign up thread as even as possible.

Currently we all just post our work and wait. You said it yourself Oberon, you dont like it when people expect feedback but dont give any... but I dont see any of your feedback on anyone elses work. Maybe I missed it or maybe its on another website, but that dosn't effect things here.

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1) - I can agree with you on the language EX. To me though, the amount of vulgarities used in a story should depend on the type of character and the setting of the world a character is set in. Some examples are two of my own stories.

In my Ben 10 Forever series, you might catch some minor words here or there but I won't make it go to the extreme as it's not that type of world and the characters just don't fully talk like that.

Another series I have is my currently planned Kamen Rider - Omni-Rider series. It mixes elements of the movies Legion and Book of Eli with elements from the anime/manga Black Lagoon and other elements of Kamen Rider. the world in that series is so dark that you are bound to here characters, some of them, have such bad potty mouths that it is just so hard to understand.

2) - As for the Badly written intimacy, I do have to strongly agree with you on that. Which is why if I write scenes that involve things like that, even if it takes a character OOC, I try to make sure I'm writing it properly. Heck, I've read stories that have big bad characters act their usual mean selves but also act completely lovey to their one love but when it comes to the intimacy scenes they either totally blow it or do it just right enough to where I like it. I know I'm guilty of possibly writing such bad intimacy scenes but I'm also trying to improve my writing as I go.

3) - Now, who was it that said they hate it when an author either doesn't continue a work after long periods of time or cancels a work without notice? Oberon? Hate to say it, but many writers and fanfic writers are guilty of this. Even me. Heck, look at my series Kamen Rider Shadow and Kamen Rider Magnus. Both have hardly had any updates but I do have their next comprising chapters written to certain extents. I have ideas of where each series is going, who they're going to get there and even what to expect as the series progresses but it's actually having the motivation to want to get on my computer and write. That and I have so many series projects I'm working on that other ones just get put on the back burner for long periods of time.

But I can find myself agreeing with your reasoning on that matter. Unless the author has a good reason as to why then there should be no reason at all. Though, writer's block is a very good reason for some authors as well. Some of the best fanfics I've read have taken years to write even if they only have under 40 chapters and that's because that author had writer's block. Some stories are written best by the seat of your pants and what suddenly pops into your head. That and also checking back on you previous chapters.

I know one thing I've learned with writing fanfiction, always make a spread sheet or pages of notes for a series so you know what to do where and how certain things are supposed to be done. this way you have a better chance of not messing up the continuity of your own series.

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That's something I've never been able to wrap my head around...why does a story that's dark and gritty - usually post-apocalyptic - automatically equal, and for some justify, the prolific use of coarse language? It's not a nitpick, just something that I've never understood and I just tend to come across it...

Yesterday, I finally brought an end to my first fanfic. It was a very hard thing to do, but it was a long time coming since the last update was 6 years ago - gosh, time really flies...I always thought that I'd be able to pick up from where I left off and continue it, but I'm not the person I was back then and it'd be odd with the different tone of writing. So I think, that if I were to ever touch on it again - a part of me really wants to, since the direction I always planned to take it in was quite good - I would have to do a complete reboot. This will allow me to change a lot of things about it - when I first started, I was rough and in need of polishing, and that fic was an important learning curve for me. I just feel so bad, since I was so determined to not let it die...and now I have. I'm quite disappointed in myself, but I'll probably plan the reboot on the side and see how far I go.

A gripe on certain reviews...

Reviewers that make assumptions - Someone was probably directed to the fic I just cancelled from a C2 group (on FF.net) that linked to fics that involve Sephiroth and Cloud. They read my fic and were put out to find that it wasn't filled with steamy content between the two, when nowhere did I allude to there being any. The fic only highlights that it's about the two, which it is. As a rule, I do not write that kind of stuff...I may entertain the idea sometimes because it's funny, but it's not what I'm into and so I don't touch it.

---

This is a tip for writers to keep in mind and I've only recently discovered this; While it may seem obvious to you on how certain things work in a world, it may not seem so with the readers.

As an example, in my DBZ fic I thought it would be obvious why Bulma wouldn't know that Broly was a Saiyan...evidently, not. I'm pretty sure they've never met, so my fic would have them meeting for the first time and Broly doesn't look like the Saiyan's Bulma has met, i.e. they all wore Frieza's armour and Goku didn't even know he was an alien, and then I'm going with the theory that he doesn't have a tail. Physically, he doesn't have one because Paragus probably chopped it off to control him better - imagine controlling a rampaging Oozaru - while genetically he still does, which is why his clone had one.

Then my Fruits Basket/Bleach crossover - Ichigo would still freak out around talking cats. It goes against what he knows to be the law of the world; you can't say that Yoruichi "cured" him of it, since he has a logical explanation for why Yoruichi is the exception. For him, the law is still "Cat's don't talk" and when he's thrown into another world, that he doesn't know the laws of, he'll naturally fall back on the fundamental laws he grew up with.

Don't know why I'm discussing it here, but those are things I'm going to address in my fics at some point since, while I feel that these things are fundamental to canon, others may not think that deeply or just don't share my way of thinking about things.

As for Steel's suggestion on a place to help develop one's ability; I'm all for that. I'd be happy to help if someone asks me directly, but I don't really leave reviews on fics these days because I get the impression that people write for the fun of it and don't like it when someone comes along and rips everything apart after all the hard work they went through. It's a different matter if they've got a draft they're working on, or if it's still early days and there's time to fix things, but to leave a review like 10+ chapters in that raises a ton of questions...

Then there's the thing that, unless the writer is willing to accommodate changes and genuinely wants to improve their writing and the delivery of their story, any constructive criticism/advice given will just fall on deaf ears and it'll be a complete waste of effort.

I feel like I'm walking in a field of land-mines here when I make these comments, because I don't want my words to be misconstrued and read too much into. I'm just speaking in general terms that could apply to anyone.

As for everything here, it certainly does seem like the "Complainers Corner", but while they're all Pet Peeves, I do hope it helps someone in someway. Especially, perhaps, in realising that if they happen to tick any of the boxes, they may wish to improve and change their style a little - or at the very least, become aware of things their readers may not like...

Edited by ErutanXiku

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I think you are making the assumption that the review or critisicm's fall on deaf ears. Certainly for some things there is nothign that can be changed to make it better, but for other things, the author can probably improve. For example if you criticise grammar then they can make an effort in later chapters to make it better. If you question plot, that actually may be a good thing for them because then they will be able to see which bit of their plots made sense. As you say, readers and writers can make assumptions so leaving critisicm on the plot helps the author see what assumptiosn they have made that they shouldn't have.

In general if it's a decent fic, then there shouldn't be too many plot holes, except the ones the author wants. Some authors also find the questions to be good in guiding them, so I don't see that a full review would be too much falling on deaf ears. It may not change something this time, but it is something that may give them guidance for the next time. By NOT reviewing, they just assume that everything is fine, and won't improve. That's why I think it's more useful to put up a review - good or bad, rather than just walking away either with expressing your like or your dislike.

I think this probably comes from the belief that while yes, Authors generally write for their own entertainment, they ALL want feed back - usually they want the mindless 'oh I liked that' feed back but some of them will genuinely want to hear that things were good or bad. After all, if you are really ONLY writing for yourself, why bother to post it somewhere if you don't want to have some feedback from others.

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